January 06, 2016
It may have taken until the turn of 2016 for bitter cold winter temperatures to arrive, but now that they are here, it's time to pull out all the stops to keep warm. While layers, central heating and hot showers all work wonders to prevent chattering teeth, nothing works quite as well as a delicious cup of hot chocolate.
If you're feeling a little worn out on plain instant mixes, here are five creative hot chocolate recipes that will liven up your taste buds and keep you feeling toasty.
With just a little bit more effort, you can bring the campfire straight to your home with a s'mores hot chocolate. Julie Van Rosendaal's recipe at Babble calls for a few simple additions to the routine mix. Just place marshmallows on a parchment-lined baking sheet and broil for 1-2 minutes until they are golden brown. Then crush up graham crackers and line the rim of your mug with them so each sip you take comes with a crunch.
Peanut butter and chocolate are a force to reckon with in any treat, from the Reese's Cup to any number of popular granola bars. Adding some peanut butter to your hot chocolate is a cinch. Sweet Remedy's recipe calls for simmering milk on low and then adding crumbled milk chocolate bars and 2 tablespoons of peanut butter. Whipped cream and chocolate sauce are optional.
If you're looking for the perfect nightcap after a long day, the Little Ferraro Kitchen has a great, simple recipe for a rum-infused white hot chocolate. The key is to buy some higher-end white chocolate chips that won't harden into a chalky texture as you sip away. Other ingredients for this treat include cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cardamom.
Often recommended as a cold and flu fighter, the hot toddy can be made in nearly limitless variations with tea or cocoa and typically a whiskey of your choice. In this variation, Kahlua is the liqueur of choice, with an additional helping of peppermint Schnapps. Throw in mini marshmallows, grated chocolate and cinnamon sticks for the full effect.
This one is pretty straightforward, mainly requiring a decisive toss of caution to the wind. Whenever you can't make up your mind between ice cream, hot chocolate and Oreos for a treat, throw them all together. Brooke Mclay's recipe at Babble calls for cookies & cream ice cream (you can even get Oreo brand), cocoa, butter, sugar and varying amounts of water depending on how much cream and sugar is in the ice cream you pick.